No Fault Divorce

No fault divorce laws commencing 3rd April 2023.

Changes to divorce law

The Divorce, Dissolution and Separation Act 2020 reforms the legal requirements and process for divorce. The act aims to reduce the potential for conflict amongst divorcing couples by:

  • removing the ability to make allegations about the conduct of a spouse
  • allowing couples to end their marriage jointly

The act also introduces a minimum period of 20 weeks between the start of proceedings and application for provisional order. This provides couples with a meaningful period of reflection and the chance to reconsider. Where divorce is inevitable, it enables couples to cooperate and plan for the future.

Under the new law it is no longer possible to contest a divorce, except on limited grounds including jurisdiction.

The new no fault divorce law and procedures came into force on 3 April 2023. All divorce applications made on or after this date will proceed under the new no fault divorce law and procedures.

Divorce proceedings issued by the Court on or before the 31st March 2023 will continue to progress under the old law and procedures until completed or until an application is made to withdraw it. If you withdraw your existing divorce application you can start again under the new, simpler, no fault divorce law and procedures.  The information about the procedures under the old law can be found here

Page last updated on 31 March 2023